Cellular Data 101: What You Need To Know About Your Plan

This weeks Verizon chat was all about data, probably one of the largest factors influencing your cellphone bill. We covered everything from the differences between Wi-Fi Data vs Cellular Data to knowing how much you need and determining where your data is being used most. 

Each Friday at 3pm EST Verizon Insider and a team of host tackle a unique tech subject during the #VZWBuzz Twitter chat. In addition to great conversation and personal experience from hundreds of tweeters, these gadget geeks provide numerous helpful resources to continue your education long after the one hour chat is over. In case you missed it, we are bringing you a recap of all we learned during this weeks chat but be sure to join us next week for more great tips, tricks and conversation! 

Wi-Fi Data vs Cellular data

First, you should know the difference between Wi-Fi data and Cellular Data. A data plan and a Wi-Fi network basically let you do the same thing: use the Internet wirelessly but there are important key differences:

  • Wi-Fi connects to a router. Cellular data doesn’t.
    To use Wi-Fi for internet access your phone or tablet must connect to a router whether it’s in your home or at the coffee shop offering free wi-fi. On the other hand, if you’re using Cellular data you’re free to roam anywhere within your coverage area without worrying about routers and wi-fi connections.
  • Wi-Fi has a limited range. Cellular data doesn’t.
    Wi-Fi only works within the range of the router. With your Verizon Wireless plan, you can access the Internet on your phone or tablet even when you’re out of Wi-Fi range.
  • Wi-Fi isnt always secure.
    If you’re using Wi-Fi at home, your connection’s security is pretty safe.Especially if you have taken the right precautions. However, public wi-fi isn’t as secure and there is alway the risk of breach. So be careful using sensitive apps and browsers when using public. 

Wi-Fi is a great option for saving on your cellular data plan when performing data-gobbling task such as watching movies, listening to music or download apps. Whenever you’re at a location with trusted wi-fi access it should definitely be on. However, it has a limited range and isn’t always your most secure option. 

You can find more in-depth information on the difference between Wi-Fi data and Cellular data with this article from Verizon. 

 

Data Usage

How Much Data Do You Need?

How much data you need truly depends on many factors: the number of devices you own, whether or not you’re connected to wi-fi most of the time and how you use your phone make big differences.  Verizon’s helpful Data Calculator allows you to you break down the way you use each device on your plan in order to estimate your data usage. It factors in how often you stream videos, listen to music, use navigation, upload photos and more. 

Once you have done that, you can take advantage of real-time data usage and more with Verizon services. 

Make sure to check out hour helpful tips on How to Save Data Charges While Traveling Abroad too. 

 

Surf and Sunshine is a member of the #VZWBuzz Lifestyle Blogger program. All opinions remain our own.

28 thoughts on “Cellular Data 101: What You Need To Know About Your Plan”

  1. This is amazing post! I am always so careless about the data in my phone, it’s insane when you think about it. But I’m mostly hooked on my private WiFi, so it’s good.

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  2. Thanks for sharing. I have unlimited everything so I tend not to worry, but there are so many options and it get confusing.

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  3. I don’t pay much attention to mine only because I have unlimited everything. However when I’m at home or on travel if I can get on Wi Fi then I will.

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  4. Yep. I don’t log in to anything out on public wi-fi. It’s too risky, so I leave that at home or on a cell connection. Thanks for spreading the word!

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  5. You definitely have to keep an eye on these things or the bill will smack you between the eyes! Thank you for sharing this information.

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  6. Thanks for the tips. I am only now learning the difference between using all my data and using someone else’s Wifi.

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  7. I have a great plan through my employer so that saves us a lot of money. Unfortunately here in Canada the cellular plans are much more expensive than in the US.

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  8. We share 10 gig between the 3 of us here at my house. We do hop on wifi everytime we get home. So that’s nice and saves us data!

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  9. I seriously pay zero attention to my cell phone plan. I could probably save a few dollars if I did, but there just aren’t enough hours in the day! I do have unlimited data, so I kind of don’t care, ha.

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  10. My husband travels and goes over his date often by using his GPS. I never go over my data. We love Verizon and have never been with any other cellular company. Maybe we should get a reward after all these years. :)

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  11. I wish I had an unlimited plan, but I don’t and we have gone over in the past. This is a great informative post. Thanks for sharing!!!

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  12. Data is King. When I look at my phone bill, I barely use minutes for calls. The majority of my usage is data and text. Wish I could a la carts all the component to save money.

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  13. I don’t have unlimited data but I very rarely use it all. However I totally understand the difference. I also use wi-fi calling when I’m traveling internationally since it’s free for me.

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  14. This is a very informative post! That Wi-Fi Data vs Cellular data can be tricky sometimes! We are all on a family plan right now and last month my sister didn’t realize that her wifi was always turned off so we got changed $30 for going over our data. Now she knows to always use wifi <3

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  15. Thanks for the informative post. Sometimes we do forget we are using cellular data instead of wifi. I know how this could wreck havoc on my phone bill. Thanks for letting us know about the data calculator. That would be a big help!

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  16. We do not have an unlimited data plan. My husband has a long commute and forgets to download his podcasts, so often times we go over the data amount.

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  17. It’s definitely cheaper to not use data but sometimes it’s not possible. It pays to learn how to use the data usage tracker we have on our phones. Thanks for the tips here!

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  18. I really like how their data calculator helps you decide what kind of plan you need. I know my kids use a lot more data than I do.

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  19. Because you show this to my parents so they understand what the differences between cellular and Wi-Fi alone. They have a very hard time understanding any of the stuff.

    Reply

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